The Detroit Tigers had a horrible 2019 — as in near record-breaking bad. Excuses can’t be made for losing, however in fairness to Manager Ron Gardenhire, for over one-third of the season he was running out a starting lineup that resembled a Double or Triple AAA team.
Heading into 2020, things already look much better for the Tigers, and they have yet to hit the field.
Tigers 2020 – new year, new attitude
Spring Training is always a great time of year. Every team is 0-0 and hope springs eternal.
For the Detroit Tigers, while they didn’t pick up any big-name top-tier players during the offseason, the flurry of free-agent signings they acquired is not too shabby, to say the least.
The lineup in 2020 is going to look considerably different this summer, and that’s a good thing.
Detroit has made some nice upgrades by signing veterans CJ Cron, Jonathan Schoop, Cameron Maybin, Austin Romine, and Ivan Nova.
Adding these seasoned veterans to a squad full of youngsters like Jacoby Jones, Christian Stewart, Jeimer Candelario, and several others should make the Tigers much more competitive this season.
2020 is going to be a big year for Jones and Stewart.
They both came into the big leagues with impressive resumes from the minors and now with a couple of seasons under their belt, management and fans alike are hoping for a big jump statistically in 2020.
AL Central contenders?
MLB experts everywhere are picking the Tigers to once again lose more than 90 games in 2020.
That’s not going to happen. In fact, if, and this is a BIG if, the Tigers stay healthy they could contend for the AL Central crown.
Last season the Tigers lost too many key players for lengthy time frames.
The Tigers lost Michael Fulmer for the entire 2019 season during spring training and the injury bug spread from there. Josh Harrison, who was signed with Detroit to take over the role as the everyday second baseman, only suited up for 36 games following a season-ending injury.
Starters Jacoby Jones and Jeimer Candelario both played under 100 games in 2019, while Christian Stewart only suited up for 104. Star super-sub Niko Goodrum also missed over a month’s time due to injury.
Yes, injuries are part of the game, however, when you lose this many players at the same time, it really changes a team’s outlook.
If they can avoid the injury bug, this team will be leaps and bounds better than the 2019 squad.
Here is a look at my projected starting lineup for the 2020 Tigers. Opening Day is just 36 days away!
- RF — Cameron Maybin
- SS — Niko Goodrum
- DH — Miguel Cabrera
- 1B — C.J. Cron
- 2B — Jonathan Schoop
- LF — Christin Stewart
- 3B — Jeimer Candelario
- C — Austin Romine
- CF — JaCoby Jones
First off the bench
- OF/1B — Brandon Dixon
- INF — Dawel Lugo
- INF — Jordy Mercer
- C — Grayson Greiner
- OF — Jorge Bonifacio
- OF — Travis Demeritte